Yesterday, we celebrated the start of the New Year, and for many African-Americans, the end Kwanza, the week-long Afrocentric celebration between Christmas and New Years. While approximately two million black Americans celebrate the holiday, one Republican state senator is totally over the idea.
While Fox News has repeatedly pedaled the idea that there is a “War on Christmas,” Wisconsin Republican state senator, Glenn Grothman, has fired some not-so-subtle shots at Kwanza.
In a press release, Grothman recently argued Kwanza “divides Americans” and the holiday needs to be “slapped down.”
“Why must we still hear about Kwanzaa? Why are hard-core left wingers still trying to talk about Kwanzaa — the supposed African-American holiday celebration between Christmas and New Year’s?”
“Of course, almost no black people today care about Kwanzaa — just white left-wingers who try to shove this down black people’s throats in an effort to divide Americans, he added. “Irresponsible public school districts such as Green Bay and Madison … try to tell a new generation that blacks have a separate holiday than Christians.”
Grothman also had a few angry words for Dr. Maulana Karenga, Kwanza’s founder. Grothman called Karenga, who was convicted of beating and torturing a woman in 1971, “a violent nut,” and said Karenga “didn’t like the idea that Christ died for all of our sins, so he felt blacks should have their own holiday — hence, Kwanzaa.”
Predictably, many in Grothman’s home state are upset by his words. Meg Moen, treasurer of a local Democratic Party, called the senator’s press release “disgusting” and said it “drips with disdain for African-Americans.”
Ironically, the celebration of Kwanza is supposed to promote unity, but this kerfuffle over the observance seems to be doing quite the opposite.
Do you celebrate Kwanza? What do you think of State Sen. Grothman’s words?